I had to just stop and share this sweet sweet photo of LT and Simone meeting.
I leave early in the morning and I just can't wait! Thank you to everyone for the support and J, T, and A - I just read your note - YES I got your girl's info from Heather. I will take pics and give love :)
I have a sense of the magnitude of these last moments before I leave for Africa and I just continue to be so impressed by this experience. I will love her, the country, the culture and all of the people and children - with honor.
Tunsitu – "She is having a great day. She is playing with a fancy baby rattler and enjoys listening to the sound it is making.She is a little shy towards me, but not to the point of tears.She would duck her head into her caregiver as I tried to snatch a cute photo.She attaches well to the caregivers and feels safe with them.She is content playing alone and also being held.She is carefree and easy."
I am trying to pinch myself every minute. This is the most surreal experience and I just feel so blessed - So very lucky.
It doesn't get much better than this. Dominic, Natalie and Simone arrived home tonight and I was lucky enough to meet them at the airport. Nothing is better than this part. She's absolutely magnificent.
We're almost there girl! And each night I sit in your room with the ladybug light on and send you a prayer and imagine you and all your precious energy in this space. I like it lots and hope you do too!
As I get ready for bed after a day getting ready for LT, I think about her and can't wait to meet her and learn about her personality and touch and love on her. Even though it's less than two week away, each day seems to take forever. What keeps me sane is the care and attention that she's getting at Gladney. Every returning family I've talked to is so reassuring about this.
I saw this posted by Shira and I thought it would be nice to share:
At the Gladney Foster Care Center in Addis Ababa there can be up to 24 babies in each of the Gladney homes (1 for infants, 1 for infant to toddler and 1 for older children) at any given time. Gladney has 3 nurses and 75 caregivers who take shifts to care for the children. It is very clean and they are well loved and cared for. Gladney also has 1 doctor who visits the foster care centers twice per week to address medical concerns and needs. The care givers love to hold the babies and all of the babies are held and played with throughout the day. Recently, Gladney had Dr. Karen Purvis, an attachment specialist, provide training to the Gladney caregivers on attachment and what can be done to promote this with the children. Weather permitting, the children are taken outside every morning to lay in the sunshine - commonly referred to as their sunbath. Gladney's in-country staff (American families who are living in Ethiopia to assist with the adoption process and Belay, the Ethiopian citizen who works so diligently for Gladney to assist with in-country issues) visit and play with the children regularly. In addition to their sunbath, the babies are bathed every morning and evening. They eat either every 2-3 hours or every 3-4 hours during the day and 1-3 times during the night, depending on age. Diapers are changed as needed, approximately 8 times a day. The children do not eat baby food. They are introduced to solid foods like pasta, vegetables, eggs, bread, and injera at about 8 months of age. Prior to this they eat formula - a special weight gain formula for those who are underweight.
I can say that LT was underweight and they are catching her up quickly. I just want to say a blessing to all the people who take care of these beautiful children. Thank you. Thank you.
Attention all waiting Gladney families, I'll be traveling soon so I want to repay the favor of the wonderful families who allowed me to send a gift or take pictures. If you are a family that has been matched and you're waiting to pick up your little one/s please email me now and so that you can get my address and send a package by 4/18 email@example.com
On another note, please send a sweet thought for my close friends Natalie and Dominic who left today to pick up their beautiful Simone. Isn't she sweet?!?! AND THANK YOU FOR ALL THE WELL WISHES. I LOVE FEELING THE LOVE :)
This is my story of the journey that led me to Ethiopia to meet my daughter and how she teaches me to Liv everyday.
"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye." --Antoine De Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince.
The colored stripes on the Ethiopian flag are significant - the red stripe stands for power, faith and blood; the yellow symbolizes peace, natural wealth and love; and the green represents the land and hope. The colors were also interpreted to have a connection to the Holy Trinity, and the three main provinces of Ethiopia. The star represents unity of the people and the races that make up Ethiopia. The five rays on the outside of the star represent prosperity and the blue disk represents peace. The three equal horizontal bands of green (top), yellow, and red with a yellow pentagram and single yellow rays emanating from the angles between the points on a light blue disk centered on the three bands; Ethiopia is the oldest independent country in Africa, and the three main colors of her flag were so often adopted by other African countries upon independence that they became known as the pan-African colors.